He showed up with henna-tinted dreads under a pork pie hat, in a batman sweatshirt with a bat skull pendant hanging off a chain on his neck. As we walked he pointed to storefronts: This used to be the punk bar. This used to be the biker bar. This is where Jodie Foster used to live. The Skull and Bones crypt is right down the street. This is where Bill and Hillary had their first date. And I used to hang out here with Kathleen Cleaver.
He led us into a basement gay bar where we ate pierogis and kielbasa. He wanted to know about Khaled, so I introduced him as an artist and architect from Damascus whose undergraduate thesis was about the architecture of heaven. Darius immediately asked him to create the set for a performance he’s working on: There should be mirrors everywhere.
And what? he asked. You came up to see New Haven?
No, I told him, we’re here with a bunch of Islamic occultists.